It’s becoming more deadly than ever for pedestrians looking to cross the road.
Drivers hit and killed 3,434 pedestrians in the United States during the first six months of 2022, according to the latest Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) report, which was a 5% increase versus the same period in 2021. The GHSA hasn’t released figures for the full year just yet.
In a press release, the GHSA said the first-half 2022 statistics, which are based on preliminary data, are “deeply troubling” since they follow a 40-year high in pedestrian deaths in 2021.
The figures continue “a gruesome decade-long trend of more people dying while walking on U.S. roads,” the report said.
The GHSA blamed various factors for the increase, beginning with “a surge in dangerous driving that began at the start of the pandemic and has not lessened.” Other factors include: the prevalence of larger and heavier vehicles on the roads, as well as infrastructure issues, such as the lack of proper sidewalks, crosswalks and lighting in many parts of the country.
Either way, “it’s absolutely mind-boggling and heartbreaking that drivers are killing an average of 19 pedestrians every single day,” said GHSA chief executive Jonathan Adkins in a statement.
Adkins added: “The only way to reverse this awful trend is to do more of everything that works — more and better designed infrastructure to keep people walking safe, equitable enforcement of traffic safety laws to stop dangerous driving and engaging more communities where the impacts of this crisis are felt the hardest.”
And some states are considerably more dangerous for pedestrians than others. the GHSA found that 38% of the fatalities in the first half of 2022 came from California, Florida and Texas.